Photographer Andreas Gursky makes an exhibition of himself; Feel Free with Zadie Smith; Denzel Washington is out of time in Roman J Israel, Esq; tracking the last days Obama as Potus44; Django Django are under Marble Skies; getting to the bottom of coffee; Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri; fighting pre-apocalyptic crime in Hard Sun; a surprising new N.E.R.D album; Stronger
London’s Hayward Gallery reopens with an Andreas Gursky retrospective that’s breathtaking in every sense It’s hard to work out why the German photographer Andreas Gursky’s photographs, around 60 of which will be on display at the Hayward Gallery in London, its first show after a two-year refurbishment, are so claustrophobic. After all, there’s so much space in them — wide skies, vast warehouses, sprawling apartment blocks, endlessly meandering rivers. And there’s so much detail: the wrappers of thousands of stacked packets of candy, in all the colours of the rainbow; the bright jackets worn and pieces of paper strewn
about by traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange; battalions of beach umbrellas on a beach in Rimini. “But,” you can’t help but ask yourself,
“where on Earth am I?”
Gursky, whose “Rhein II” is the most expensive photograph ever sold, reaching £2.7m at auction in 2016, takes, and in some instances manipulates, photos that show the way the world looks and suggest the way it works. Consumerism appears on a gigantic scale, be it shelves of books and other products at an Amazon storage facility in Phoenix, Arizona, or a vast field of solar panels in the south of
France, that make it clear how much impact we have as a species, while also seeming to imply how little significance each of us has as an individual. This is a major show with big ideas that will leave you feeling very small indeed.
Previous page: Bahrain 1, and right, Amazon, both by Andreas Gursky, are heading to the Hayward in the new year
Andreas Gursky, 25 January — 22 April 2018, Hayward Gallery, London SE1; southbankcentre.co.uk